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Title: Agricultural Burning and Air Quality over Northern India: A Synergistic Analysis using NASA’s A-train Satellite Data and Ground Measurements

Abstract

In recent years, New Delhi, the capital city of India, has been ranked among the most polluted cities in the world in terms of air quality related to Particulate Matter (PM). In this paper, we show that the PM 2.5, a major component of the measure of air quality, over New Delhi is strongly impacted by the agricultural fires in the north-western Indian states of Punjab and Haryana during the post-monsoon season (October and November). Using data from NASA’s A-train sensors (MODIS, OMI, and CALIOP) in conjunction with the ground-level PM 2.5 mass concentration measured at the US Embassy site in New Delhi (2013-2015), and back-trajectory analysis, it is shown that the smoke particles produced from numerous fires in Punjab and Haryana are advected over the national capital region under the influence of north-westerly winds, thereby greatly increasing the ground-level PM 2.5 from 50 µg/m -3 before the onset of burning in early October to as high as 300 µg/m -3 (24-hour averaged, 7-day running mean) during the peak burning period in early November. Relationships between the satellite measurements of fire counts and aerosols in the crop burning region and PM 2.5 over New Delhi are found to be stronglymore » correlated. A linear regression analysis reveals that increments in the fire counts, aerosol optical depth, UV Aerosol Index, and aerosol absorption optical depth by 100, 1.0, 1.0, and 0.1 over the burning areas result in an increase in PM 2.5 by 20, 47, 134, and 142 µg/m -3, respectively, over New Delhi. Back-trajectory analysis shows that about 74%, 62%, and 51% of total number of daily trajectories for altitudes 10 m, 500 m, and 1500 m, respectively, intercepted the biomass burning region before arriving at the receptor location in New Delhi; this further corroborates the transport mechanism observed in the satellite data. A 15-year long record of A-train satellite measurements shows an increasing number of agricultural fires (29% higher) and aerosol loading during the second half of the record (2009-2015) compared to that during the first half (2002-2008), which is one of the major concerns for the deteriorating air quality in the region.« less

Authors:
 [1]; ORCiD logo [2];  [3];  [1];  [3];  [4]
  1. Universities Space Research Association (USRA/GESTAR), Columbia, MD (United States); NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  2. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  3. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  4. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States); Morgan State Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1700511
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-125481
Journal ID: ISSN 1680-8584
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Aerosol and Air Quality Research
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 18; Journal Issue: 7; Journal ID: ISSN 1680-8584
Publisher:
Chinese Association for Aerosol Research in Taiwan
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; Crop residue fires; Smoke particles; Punjab; Haryana; NASA's A-train Satellites; New Delhi; PM2.5; Northern India

Citation Formats

Jethva, Hiren T., Chand, Duli, Torres, O., Gupta, Pawan, Lyapustin, Alexei, and Patadia, Falguni. Agricultural Burning and Air Quality over Northern India: A Synergistic Analysis using NASA’s A-train Satellite Data and Ground Measurements. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.4209/aaqr.2017.12.0583.
Jethva, Hiren T., Chand, Duli, Torres, O., Gupta, Pawan, Lyapustin, Alexei, & Patadia, Falguni. Agricultural Burning and Air Quality over Northern India: A Synergistic Analysis using NASA’s A-train Satellite Data and Ground Measurements. United States. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2017.12.0583
Jethva, Hiren T., Chand, Duli, Torres, O., Gupta, Pawan, Lyapustin, Alexei, and Patadia, Falguni. Wed . "Agricultural Burning and Air Quality over Northern India: A Synergistic Analysis using NASA’s A-train Satellite Data and Ground Measurements". United States. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2017.12.0583. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1700511.
@article{osti_1700511,
title = {Agricultural Burning and Air Quality over Northern India: A Synergistic Analysis using NASA’s A-train Satellite Data and Ground Measurements},
author = {Jethva, Hiren T. and Chand, Duli and Torres, O. and Gupta, Pawan and Lyapustin, Alexei and Patadia, Falguni},
abstractNote = {In recent years, New Delhi, the capital city of India, has been ranked among the most polluted cities in the world in terms of air quality related to Particulate Matter (PM). In this paper, we show that the PM2.5, a major component of the measure of air quality, over New Delhi is strongly impacted by the agricultural fires in the north-western Indian states of Punjab and Haryana during the post-monsoon season (October and November). Using data from NASA’s A-train sensors (MODIS, OMI, and CALIOP) in conjunction with the ground-level PM2.5 mass concentration measured at the US Embassy site in New Delhi (2013-2015), and back-trajectory analysis, it is shown that the smoke particles produced from numerous fires in Punjab and Haryana are advected over the national capital region under the influence of north-westerly winds, thereby greatly increasing the ground-level PM2.5 from 50 µg/m-3 before the onset of burning in early October to as high as 300 µg/m-3 (24-hour averaged, 7-day running mean) during the peak burning period in early November. Relationships between the satellite measurements of fire counts and aerosols in the crop burning region and PM2.5 over New Delhi are found to be strongly correlated. A linear regression analysis reveals that increments in the fire counts, aerosol optical depth, UV Aerosol Index, and aerosol absorption optical depth by 100, 1.0, 1.0, and 0.1 over the burning areas result in an increase in PM2.5 by 20, 47, 134, and 142 µg/m-3, respectively, over New Delhi. Back-trajectory analysis shows that about 74%, 62%, and 51% of total number of daily trajectories for altitudes 10 m, 500 m, and 1500 m, respectively, intercepted the biomass burning region before arriving at the receptor location in New Delhi; this further corroborates the transport mechanism observed in the satellite data. A 15-year long record of A-train satellite measurements shows an increasing number of agricultural fires (29% higher) and aerosol loading during the second half of the record (2009-2015) compared to that during the first half (2002-2008), which is one of the major concerns for the deteriorating air quality in the region.},
doi = {10.4209/aaqr.2017.12.0583},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1700511}, journal = {Aerosol and Air Quality Research},
issn = {1680-8584},
number = 7,
volume = 18,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {6}
}

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Works referencing / citing this record:

Extreme temperature and rainfall events in National Capital Region of India (New Delhi) in the recent decades and its possible impacts
journal, November 2018


Connecting Crop Productivity, Residue Fires, and Air Quality over Northern India
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Missing emissions from post-monsoon agricultural fires in northwestern India: regional limitations of MODIS burned area and active fire products
journal, February 2019


Submicron aerosol composition in the world's most polluted megacity: the Delhi Aerosol Supersite study
journal, January 2019


Mitigation of PM2.5 and ozone pollution in Delhi: a sensitivity study during the pre-monsoon period
journal, January 2020